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Comment This is insanely obvious (Score 1) 350

Manning should get a full pardon and a medal of honour. S/he has done more for this country than Biden ever did, and that was after getting a forcible deployment against regimental doctor's orders.

The worst Manning is truly guilty of is exploiting severe violations of DoD regulations by the unit s/he was in. Those violations, and not her actions,compromised national security, as did Manning's superior officer. Those people were under strict orders on not deploying the severely mentally ill into Iraq and to withdraw clearance from such folk, but violated those orders in order to look pretty. That is a serious crime. A crime they, not Chelsea, are guilty of.

Under DoD regulations, computers holding top secret information may NOT be secured by just a password and may NOT support USB devices. I was working for the military when they did the cutover from passwords to passwords plus Class III digital certificate on a smartcard. The USB restriction has been there more-or-less from the introduction of USB, as it violates Rainbow Book standards requiring enforceable multi-level security.

I should not have to point this out on Slashdot, half the three digit IDers were probably involved in writing the standards! And the rest know all this because we had to look the bloody stuff up to get the NSA's SELinux working!

She was also under orders, remember, to ensure that no war crime was concealed by the military. Concealing a war crime, even if that's your sole involvement, is a firing squad offence under international law. Has been since the Nuremberg Trials. Nor is it acceptable to be ordered to carry out such a cover-up. You are forbidden from obeying such orders on pain of death.

Those are the rules. The U.S. military's sole defence is that nobody is big enough to enforce them. If someone did, the U.S. population would be noticeably smaller afterwards. We know that because of Manning.

But Manning's service doesn't end there. Military philosophers, tacticians and strategists will be poring over those notes for decades, running simulations to see when, where and how the U.S. was eventually defeated in Afghanistan and Iraq. They will compare actions carried out with the military philosophies the U.S. officially abandoned in favour of modern theories. They will search for ways in which the new approaches worked and where they should have stuck with the traditional.

Because modern computers can run millions, even billions, of tactical simulations in just a few hours, it is certain that, inside of a decade, someone will have done this and published a book on where the military went wrong and where the Taliban and Iraqi army went wrong as well. This core material allows for that.

These wars may turn out to be our Sun Tzu Moment, when through cataclysmic defeats at the hands of, essentially, barbarians (and make no mistake, they're defeats), a systematic analysis of all that went wrong will be conducted in order to produce a guide on how to have things guaranteed to go right.

Without Manning's data, this couldn't happen. Direct footage, real-time tactical information, logistics, international political interactions, there's enough there to actually do that.

I'd prefer it to be us, because nothing stops the next terror group to form from performing the same study. Historically, it has been shown that a smart army can defeat a confident opponent with superior technology and ten times the numbers, or with inferior technology and a hundred times the numbers. No reason to assume these are hard limits.

If it is us that figures it out, the Pentagon (still fixated on Admiral Poyndexter and his psychic warriors) won't be involved, it'll be people on the outside with more nous and fewer yes-men. And for that, Manning deserves the highest reward.

Besides, it'll annoy the neoconservatives and that's worth their weight in gold-plated latium.

Comment Re: Bradley Manning needs a HOSTS file (Score 1) 350

Define "male". Not in terms of social norms - those vary between societies. And, since you didn't accept the suggestion of a genetics test, you don't get to use that either. Historical records are of no interest, you weren't there when they were made so you can't vouch for them. Besides, plenty of species have individuals change gender. History proves nothing.

You could try a neurological test, but I'll wager you that it shows Manning to be female. The feelings come from the brain, there's no such thing as a spirit outside of hard liquor.

So what have you got to offer?

Comment China wants to prevent another revolution (Score 3, Insightful) 23

Since the fast-movers with ties to government have already captured the formerly-state-run wealth and have turned China into an oligarchy of Mercedes and Tesla drivers, the last thing they want is the peasants chatting together on unregulated apps and starting something like a bottom-up communist revolution.

Comment Re:Main application? (Score 1) 77

I'm not quite sure why the iRiver IHP-120/140s didn't do FLAC out of the box. They supported some other specialty goodies(line level and optical in and out) that required more hardware and are probably even more esoteric; and they had ogg vorbis support, so it's not like they were MP3 only or wedded to whatever Microsoft was pushing at the time(the 300 series, though, leaned dangerously in that direction).

Luckily rockbox support is quite good on those models, which takes most of the pain away. LCD isn't good enough to do Doom justice, however.

Comment Re:Translation (Score 4, Informative) 30

If memory serves, the original logic behind the existence of this thing was dissatisfaction with Twitter jerking around 3rd party client developers in order to ensure that their freeloading peasants were exposed to enough advertising and had suitably limited control over layout, presentation, etc.

This service was going to be the one where developers came first and you were the customer, not the product. As far as I know that part of the vision was delivered; it just turns out that demand for "Like twitter, except basically empty" isn't all that robust, no matter how nice the service is.

Comment Re:Touch bar is a good idea (Score 1) 228

I don't disagree that Apple makes good hardware; my point was that (presumably because they care more about iDevices on the low end; and just don't care on the high end; and because, if only because MS and Intel have been cluebatting them as hard as they can for several years, PC OEMs have stepped up their game a little bit) Apple's offerings have gotten comparatively less exciting. They are still very good, unless you are one of the customers they decided they don't care about anymore; but the difference is not as dramatic as it once was.

Back in the bad old days, getting a genuinely thin and light PC laptop was downright hard. Sony and Fujitsu had some slightly eccentric offerings for moderately alarming amounts of money, some of the X-series Thinkpads were pretty good; but ibooks and powerbooks were often actually cheaper once you ignored the janky plastic crap and barely portable stuff in the bargain bin. That situation eased a bit once Intel dropped the pitiful farce that "Pentium 4M" was actually a mobile CPU and accepted that Pentium M parts were going to have to be available across the board, not just as a high end price-gouge product; but even once suitably low power CPUs were available, atrocious screens, shit build quality, and assorted other sins remained the rule.

On the desktop side, the minis were actually pretty aggressive(you could usually 'beat' them with some mini-tower eMachine that managed to be noisier despite having 10-20 times the volume to put a cooling system in; but that wasn't very impressive); The iMacs compared less well in a straight spec-fight; but good all-in-ones were practically nonexistent elsewhere; and the workstation hardware tended to get gimped GPUs; but was otherwise a pretty solid competitor among its peers.

All of this just isn't as true anymore. You can't get a screen that isn't something of an embarrassment for less than ~$1400(there is the macbook air; but 1440x900, in 2017, for $1000?); and once you move north of a thousand bucks; PC laptops suck far less than they used to. The macbook pros are nice; but more 'nice' than 'pro'. iMacs are still pretty good as AIO options; but the less said about the 'Mac Pro' the better.

I have no interest in arguing that what Apple is doing is bad business, they certainly make enough money on it; but it is pretty hard to be surprised that it isn't doing OSX's market share any favors.

Comment Re:Not a huge surprise... (Score 3, Insightful) 228

PC laptop screens went through some dark, dark times. The cheap crap still has lousy screens; but there was some time where it was hard to find anything decent, at any price(especially after the harrowing of the 4:3 panels and the massacre of what few 19:10s existed). At least now you can get decent panels again, if you stay out of the bargain basement.

Comment Not a huge surprise... (Score 5, Interesting) 228

While they continue to pull defeat from the jaws of victory with baffling regularity(eg. needlessly atrocious touchpads for no obvious reason); it's amazing how much less-bad your average PC laptop is today, when compared to the race-to-the-bottom and "Yeah, it's a 15in low-res screen and 2 inches thick" era. Models that can go directly head-to-head with Apple's finest are rarer; but you can often save enough money, vs. the really classy Apple gear, that a few minor sins can be overlooked. Combine that with Apple's more or less total neglect of anything desktop/workstation, which is a boring segment but moves a lot of hardware; and the fair success of Chromebooks as practically-disposable cheap 'n portable options; and you have a few reasons why OSX marketshare might not be doing as well outside of the truly devoted.

Back in the day, an ibook/macbook was both good and actually one of the cheaper options if you needed something small and light; mac minis stacked up reasonably favorably against all but the most atrocious cheapy towers; and Mac Pros were pretty respectably priced workstation offerings. I remember, back when they were still doing the intel-based 'cheese grater' case Pros; we were a Dell shop but when we priced out the Pros vs. equivalent Precisions our Dell rep turned a slightly unhealthy color and had to cut us a deal to make it worth going with those rather than just bootcamping the macs. That...isn't exactly...how the world works anymore.

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